Norman Rockwell is my favorite painter. Yes, I know that shows what a lowbrow I am among art aficianados, but I don’t care. His paintings evoke a wide variety of emotions in me…nostalgia, laughter, a lump in the throat, gratitude, awe, love, joy.
Most of the time Rockwell depicted everyday Americans doing everyday things. He was “America’s Artist,” THE chronicler of the “ideal” of people living out the American Dream. Even when it was more an ideal at times than a reality…not everyone in America got to live in a house with a picket fence. Not every child had an idyllic childhood playing leapfrog in pretty meadows. Not every family had a bounteous Thanksgiving dinner, surrounded by loving and cheerful family members. But it was good to see his paintings on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post and have the hope that someday this might all come true for every American.
Above is one of the few paintings Norman did that was not focused on Americans. And it depicts an even higher hope than that everyone can enjoy the physical prosperity of the American Dream. Norman Rockwell had a dream for the whole world, and he shares it with us in this painting. IF ONLY some day EVERYONE would follow the admonition to “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”!
That’s my wish and prayer for your future, and the world’s future, on this day—which happens to be “The Feast of Trumpets,” a special biblical Holy Day that both Jews and some Christians observe. Including me.
“Thy Kingdom Come…”
Check out the short “Story Behind…” video below for some fascinating tidbits about the painting. Oh … and one it doesn’t mention: In the top right corner of the painting is a very personal, poignant touch. The lady’s face is that of Rockwell’s wife, Mary, who died the previous year. The face of the little child she is holding, pressed against her cheek, is their first grandchild, that she didn’t live to see.